Ranji Trophy: Hyderabad's Tanmay makes J&K toil

Jammu & Kashmir fell short on bowling resources to trouble Hyderabad, with the exception of off-spinner and captain Parvez Rasool.

Tanmay Agarwal cracked an unbeaten 106.   -  Nandakumar Marar

Jammu & Kashmir fell short on bowling resources to trouble Hyderabad, with the exception of off-spinner and captain Parvez Rasool. The latter got rid of his counterpart S. Badrinath with a delivery hastening off the pitch, but his team-mates could not capitalise on the advantage of winning the toss at the Motibaug ground. Tanmay Agarwal cracked an unbeaten 106 (275balls, 15x4) switching between caution and acceleration and scored a major chunk in Hyderabad’s 234 for three at stumps in the Ranji Trophy Group 'C' fixture.

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He was lucky to get a respite on 61, caught behind off a no ball by Ram Dayal Punia. Tanmay waited at the crease on umpire’s instructions and replays confirmed the bowlers had erred in delivery stride. The Hyderabad left-hander looked composed for the reminder of his 362-minute stay. Rasool was given respect, others punished for lapses in length and the Hyderabad opener slashed a ball from Samiulla Beig to the third man fence for 15th four and hundred in 258 deliveries.

Rasool opted to field and after 10 overs of seam and swing on a neutral track, decided to bring himself on. He commanded respect straightaway by sticking to a tight line and kept batsmen on their toes with assistance off the wicket. Left-arm spinner Harmeet joined the attack from the other end in the 32nd over. Badrinath and opener Tanmay tackled the spinners with caution, especially with fielders hovering around the bat when the rival captain was bowling.

Beig slogged hard in the morning, coming on first change. He stuck to the offstump line and gained lift off the track. The wicket of an attacking opener Akshath Reddy was reward for consistent effort by the bowler. Badrinath srarted off in rapidfire mode, stealing three fours in a row against Beig before sobering down against the spinners. Left-hander Tanmay stroked eight boundaires when balls were pitched in his zone, crossing half-century mark in 128 balls.

The J&K skipper bowled a tight 12-5-20-0 second spell before and after lunch before bringing back the fast bowlers. The Hyderabad No. 3 had settled down by then to launch intro strokes. Badrinath cracked drives off the front foot, in between glances through the slip cordon. Tanmay remained patient as the second-wicket stand put on 100 and was in mood to take on the attack. Sensing the initiative slipping away, Rasool returned to the attack.

The move worked as J&K rejoiced Badrinath’s dismissal just when the former India strokeplayer looked to have taken charge of the situation. Three runs away from a deserving half-century, the most experienced batsman risked a sweep against the off-spinner and missed. He had stroked eight fours for 47 off 104 balls and went back disappointed with himself. Balachander Anirudh, next man in, launched into big hits for a breezy 46 (5x4, 2x6) before falling to Rasool, whose figures read an impressive 29-15-39-2 on a day of toil for team-mates.

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